Stories From the Land

Stories matter.  They form the foundation of our daily lives and dreams.  They help us discover our place in the world as we create our life story.

Stories teach what it is to be human and about the place we call home.  They map the contours of struggle.  They show us the triumph of the human spirit and the timeless connection of people to each other and the land that sustains us.

Storytelling builds community by revealing common ground which is used to move the community to action.  In community, anything is possible.

In many cultures, winter signaled the return of storytelling.  Each winter, Monarch Teacher Network is conducting a series of Storytelling courses called Stories from the Land.

We have three levels of events and anyone is welcome to join us:  Teacher, Student, Naturalist, Master Gardener, Parent, Grandparent, Community Leader, and Interested Participant.

  • Storytelling short course: Two hour evening sessions, held locally, that provide an introduction to the art of storytelling.
  • Storytelling workshop: This one day course provides background on stories and storytelling.  Lessons and activities that can be used with a group or in the classroom are modeled and discussed.  Participants will explore stories and ways to improve storytelling abilities.
  • Storytelling retreat: This retreat provides more time to investigate the power of “telling” a tale using more than just voice to paint a vivid story that will captivate audiences.  The group will disect story elements to create a story or enhance an existing story.  We will draw our inspiration from the natural world – stars, constellations, lakes, rivers, woods, trees, animals, plants, earth, moon, and sun.  Shared experiences provide safe environments to lower the risk of all participants.  Activities translate directly into the classroom as well.

Bring a storytelling event to your community or school.  Contact Erik Mollenhauer emollen213@gmail.com 856.381.9230 or Brian Hayes bkhayesoutdoors@gmail.com 856.649.8723 to schedule an event in a location near you.

Previous storytelling activities have been held in the following locations:

Duke Farms – Hillsborough / Camp Speers – Dingman’s Ferry, PA / Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge – Brigantine / Holland Twp School – Milford / The EARTH CENTER – South Brunswick / Cape May National Wildlife Refuge – Wildwood Crest / Maurice Hawk School – West Windsor / Riverview Elementary School – Denville / South Jersey Technology Park – Glassboro / Bolger Middle School – Keansburg  / Delaware Twp School – Sergeantsville / Allen Roberts School – New Providence / Alice Paul Institute – Mount Laurel